Thursday, 25 July 2019

INTERVIEW: Our reporter Mary Fogg chats with rising star singer / songwriter, Plested.


Our reporter Mary Fogg chats with rising star singer / songwriter, Plested.

Being a huge music fan, I jumped at the chance of having an interview chat with upcoming singer-songwriter star Phil Plested. This funny and charismatic artist, who performs as Plested, is making waves in the music industry right now and although he’s penned songs for some of pop music’s biggest names, such as Zayne Malik, The Vamps, Little Mix, Emeli Sande and Calum Scott, is well and truly become a rising star in his own right. Plested who is based in London now says he has his own story to tell and has launched a solo career. Here’s a little peek into this emotionally driven singer-songwriter’s world!

Your Influences?
I’m influenced by so many things, musically folk, with a hint of rap, and always, always it is about the lyrics. I am lyrically driven and it’s the words and the often deep meanings that are the driving force behind my songs.

Is there a family history of musical talent?
My Grandad was a big influence on my love of music. He used to play in a band that did great Beatles' covers . As a youngster I played the violin and clarinet and studied musical grades. This did become a bit monotonous however as I preferred to just pick up an instrument and be spontaneous. My Grandad really helped to encourage my musical ability and its really bugging me that now I can’t remember the name of the band he was in!

On Bob Dylan?A lyrical genius.

Your Song “Either You Love Me Or You Don’t” is a beautiful track, is it based on a real life personal situation?
Its based very much on that interesting concept of friend-zoning. That sometimes there can be months and months of confusion with someone that’s very special to you but you’re not quite sure where you stand. Do they love you, do you question if you even love them? Are you hitting the friend zone with so much time wasted with unanswered questions..and that one big question “Either you love me or you don’t” nobody wants grey areas. I think we’ve all been there so yes, I guess it is based on real life.

Can you remember the first song you ever wrote?
Ah I remember it well. It was called “Ego” and it was awful.

It can’t be that awful surely, any lyrics you’d be happy to share?“Sitting on my ego, wondering where we go..”

Ok then...How do you feel about your audience, the applause you undoubtedly get and adoring fans of your work. Does it boost you, make you uncomfortable?Firstly, I’m a young guy from Watford and there is still a 'pinch-me-to-make-sure-it’s-actually-happening' feel to my success as a musician. I guess I’m a bit of a pessimist and just heading over to a gig and seeing that people have even turned up gives me great pride. I always have that moment beforehand wondering if there will actually be anyone there. I’m always relieved every time when there actually is!

Do you think it means more to have a song sung by its writer?As long as you can truly resonate with someone’s work I don’t think it matters. Yes, it can be more of a personal journey singing your own-penned work but if someone else you connect with can bring their own story to your words I think it can still be really powerful. Likewise I am happy to sing other people’s work as long as I feel I have a connection to the lyrics.

Are you more a singer or songwriter?
I am equally passionate about both!

When do ideas come to you?I’m a huge film buff and often watching films that touch me somehow..ideas and lyrics will just come to me.

Who would you love to work with?Right now 100% Adele - I have never met her and she has one of the biggest creative energies I know. She’s definitely up there on my ‘Want to work with’ list!

What helps you through a creative/writers block?Walking away. Just leaving the space where you would ordinarily ‘work’ and go and firstly get some air. I think relaxing helps, getting away for a while if the block carries on. Although not due to a creative block I’ve just come back from a lovely stay in North Wales and feel particularly energised and creative. So time away to recharge definitely helps.

Do you have a particular ‘go to’ activity to help you relax?My illustration work. I have a huge love of illustration which I studied and that helps me relax and focus my energies on something I really enjoy.

I’m a massive record fan and picking up my next vinyl is always on my mind. Is any of your music currently available on vinyl?Ah me too! Sadly not available on vinyl right now but watch this space!

Thank you so much for your time Phil, one final question I’d love to ask. Do you ever get friends asking you to write them a song. I’ve never had a song written for me and I think it is something I’d definitely want to ask my singer-songwriter friend!Ha! Yes I do! However mostly when they’re drunk! Btw I’ll write you a song!

I’m holding you to that!

With thanks to Phil Plested for taking the time out of his busy schedule to chat with me. I’m sure we’ll be hearing a lot more from this talented singer-songwriter.

You can hear his song “Either You Love Me Or You Don’t” here. https://g.co/kgs/eTb41T

Interviewer - Mary Fogg
on - 23/7/19

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